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[247] gentleman, pleasant manners flow naturally from the goodness of his heart, while an impulsive temper is kept under almost perfect control. At this time he was little known to the country. A grand charge at Manassas, which he led with dashing courage, routing the enemy and deciding the victory; and a wound believed to be mortal, and nearly proving so, had given rank to the man who was now about to lead five and twenty thousand soldiers into one of the most hazardous and up to a certain point, most brilliant campaigns of modern warfare. If Morgan had been captured, and if Louisville had been occupied, ensuring the overthrow of Buell, as some military critics are saying, and not without a show of reason, it must be confessed, might have been done, and ought to have been done, the name of Kirby Smith would have been placed, at once, high upon the roll of great captains.

Barboursville, a dilapidated village, twice the size of Boston, is the metropolis of this mountain region. Before our arrival it had been a depot of supplies for the Union army at Cumberland Gap. Our cavalry under Col. Scott, which entered Kentucky by the Jamestown road, captured London two days before General Smith reached Barboursville, and the enemy's trains at the latter place were hurried off to the Gap and escaped.

The command of General Smith, at this time in Kentucky, consisted of Cleburne's and Churchill's divisions, six thousand men, in the neighborhood of Barboursville, Heth's division, three thousand strong, at Boston, and Scott's brigade of cavalry, twelve or fifteen hundred men, beyond Boston. The greater portion of the artillery and the wagon trains were still engaged in the difficult passage of the mountains at Big Creek Gap. The artillery horses were of little service, so steep was the ascent, and the footing insecure, but the men fastened long ropes to the guns and caissons, and, twenty or thirty pulling together, dragged them slowly but steadily over the worst places. This was the Army of Kentucky then. In Tennessee, Stevenson's splendid division, ten thousand men, with a brigade of cavalry, remained for the present threatening Cumberland Gap, and various detachments, guarding important points throughout the department. It was necessary to pursue one of three courses. To assault Cumberland Gap, where the Federal General Morgan was powerfully fortified with ten thousand men; to remain where we were, and by cutting off supplies compel Morgan to come out and give battle in the open field; or to advance boldly into the heart of Kentucky. Even a simultaneous assault in front and rear upon Cumberland Gap, never a very promising operation where easy communication between the assailing forces is impossible, could

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